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Wikipedia:Size in volumes

This page displays the current size of the English Wikipedia (without images) in print volumes, per mathematical calculation.

2957 volumes
15 stacks

Human outline.svg

Assumptions and calculationsEdit

  • On 6 August 2019 Special:statistics showed 3,417,737,301 words across 5,903,983 articles implying an average of 579 words per article.
  • This showed that in January 2010 (most recent statistics) 14 GB (=1,5032,385,536 bytes) across 1,798  million words, implying 8.3 bytes/word. ASCII uses 1 byte/character which in turn implies 8.3 characters/word. However, this includes wikimarkup, and 5 char/word plus one for space is standard, so 6 characters/word will be assumed.
  • There are currently 5,972,533 articles, which means 3.458096607×10^9 words, which means 2.0748579642×10^10 characters.
  • One volume: 25cm high, 5cm thick. 500 leaves, 2 pagefaces per leaf, two columns per pageface, 80 rows/column, 50 characters per row. So one volume = 8,000,000 characters, or 1,333,333 words, or 2,302.8 articles. (Pictures not included!)
  • Thus, the text of the English Wikipedia is currently equivalent to 2,866.8 volumes of the Encyclopædia Britannica.
  • Sanity check: Encyclopædia Britannica has 44 million words across 32 volumes, or 1,375,000 words per volume. This would imply 2,514 volumes for WP.

Print WikipediaEdit

The Print Wikipedia installation

In June 2015, artist Michael Mandiberg (User:Theredproject) generated a 7,473 volume print-ready collection of the English Wikipedia in PDF format, printed wallpaper representing the spines of the books, and printed over 100 volumes through print on demand service Lulu, as part of an art installation at the Denny Gallery in New York City. The table of contents alone took 91 volumes to list the nearly 11.5 million articles.[1][2]

See alsoEdit


  1. ^ Schuessler, Jennifer (16 June 2015). "Moving Wikipedia From Computer to Many, Many Bookshelves". The New York Times. Retrieved 20 June 2015.
  2. ^ "Github site mandiberg/printwikipedia". Retrieved 2015-07-02.

External linksEdit